Things are heating up outside, and inside, the entire company is cutting out earlier and earlier with every passing Friday afternoon. Summer is here and minds are turning to anything and everything but the company’s bottom line. It’s hard to be the one walking around with the big stick, demanding everyone fall into line. As an HR manager, you can’t exactly go around screaming, “Off with their heads!”

The problem is, you’d rather be heading for the hills too, but someone has to hold down the fort. So, how do you get a handle on your staff so that the needs of the business are met without coming across like a wicked step-mother (or father as the case may be)?

Here are some ways to keep your employees engaged, and retain your sanity at the same time.

Encourage Productivity by Offering Incentives

One excellent incentive is to provide a list of tasks that must be completed each week, followed by short term incentives for top performers. If all tasks on the list are completed by close of business on Thursday, then the person in question may take Friday afternoon off. Another variation would be to allow employees to receive full pay without cutting into vacation time, if they work four 10-hour days rather than five eight-hour days. Employees get an extra day off, and you’re still getting the same number of hours. More importantly, these hours are likely to be more productive because employees are choosing to work them.

Get a Handle on Vacation Expectations

The one thing that is an absolute must is that the business must continue to operate – even in the heat of summer. But, this is a time of year when many families are planning vacations to exotic ports of call, summer cabins on lakes, or anywhere slightly cooler than where you are right now. This means there may be holes in your productivity if you aren’t careful. The sooner you know about overlapping vacations, the more time you have to prepare for them so that business doesn’t suffer while the vacations are going on.

Choose Your Large-Scale Battles Wisely

The temperature outside isn’t the only thing that’s warm during the dog days of summer. As the thermostat begins to show a little extra red, tempers tend to flare. Then more and more people are seeing red over the least little things. Don’t let this happen to you. Keep your cool over the small stuff and save your fire for the important battles that are sure to crop up during the summer months. It’s best to give a little, as long as employees aren’t walking all over you and the company policies. Wait until it’s something really important before letting the hammer drop. It will improve morale and get your employees behind you.

Summer doesn’t have to be a massive upheaval to the way business gets done. If you keep these things in mind, your business should be able to run smoothly and efficiently all summer long. To get more out of your staffing strategy this summer, consider the advantages of bringing in temporary employees to offset the extra workload, and create an enthusiastic team spirit to the workplace. TempStaff has pre-screened temporary staff ready to go to work now.

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